A few years ago, I discovered that Pesto is not the italian version of Pistou. After some research, I found out that most probably, they share the same origins. French and Italians don’t agree on which version was created first (no surprise there!). The Pistou originated in Provence and is mainly done with basil, garlic and olive oil,… the Italian version, Pesto, emerged around Genoa and has the same ingredients plus Parmesan cheese (or Pecorino Romano) and pine nuts.
This Pesto recipe is very simple, easy to make and most of all delicious. I tried a few recipes before finding the right one, where the ratio between the ingredients is well balanced. Use very high quality ingredients… it will make the whole difference between a Pesto and a incredible-delicious-divine Pesto.
You can serve Pesto over any shape or form of Pasta, orzo, on minestrone soup, on a caprese salad etc...
adapted from La Cuisine des Italiens
2 garlic cloves
2 oz (55 g) pine nuts
3 oz (85 g) fresh basil leaves (stems removed)
4 tablespoon freshly grated Parmesan
5 fl oz (150 ml) olive oil
Scale and prep all the ingredients.
You will need a food processor and a container for the pesto. From my experience, one dose of this recipe fits perfectly in one jar of Bonne Maman jam.
In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the blade attachment, put the garlic, pine nuts, fresh basil leaves and the grated Parmesan cheese. Mix until smooth. The texture should be like a thick paste. Slowly and continuously, in a very fine stream, pour the olive oil while still mixing. Some food processors allow you to do that, pouring the liquid through an opening on the top lid.
Taste and season with a little bit of salt if necessary. Be careful, the Parmesan cheese is already very salty…
Transfer the pesto to a container, covering the top with a layer of olive oil. It will help preserve the bright green color of your pesto. You can put it in the fridge for a week or more…
You can also freeze small amounts of your pesto, for future use…